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  • Greenhouse, Hot House, Cold Frame and Shelf Tunnel

    Posted on March 19th, 2010 Pam 2 comments

    I have heard about Grow Tunnels and I wanted to start one of my own to experiment with early vegetable growing. So I decided to try it ‘my way’.

    SUPPLIES (I used supplies I had around the house and yard, so this was free). You see, some tunnels cost as much as $600 so I was happy I came up with this idea.
    1. Shelves, (I used 2)
    2. Blankets (I used padded blankets)
    3. Plastic (I used some heavy plastic I used for covering padio furnature).
    4. Staples
    5. Hammer
    6. Steel Posts (I used three)
    7. Wire
    8. Pieces of wood to make doors with the plastic. ( I used two 1″X4″, 4 feet tall).

    A. I decided the location. The more sun the better. (facing south and more east than west)
    B. Stapled the blankets to the backs of the shelves.
    (NOTE: I also stapled two blankets to flip over the top at night. These cover the sides and the front to hold in the heat at night.
    C. Pounded the posts in and wired the shelves to them.
    D. Stapled the plastic to the top and sides.
    E. Made plastic doors. Staple some of the plastic to the wood and rolled it up to prevent the plastic from ripping.
    F. I have a space between both of the shelves. This way I can put the wooden doors in the space to close the doors.

    Here is a picture of the front of the shelves. You can see the sides and tops have plastic on them. I did have to cut vents in the top, because the ‘green house’ was getting too hot. You can also see that I have a flap that covers over the doors, without that flap, too much hot air would escape.

    This shows the hot house with one of the blankets covering the front. I cover it at night to keep the heat in. I tested one side, and it’s temperature was 50 degrees at 9:00 in the morning without a cover over it at night.

    This shows the ‘door’ open, you can see the board I use for the end of the door. I really works pretty good. Oddly enough, it stays quite warm on a sunny day with the door open.

    This shows some plants I planted on March 16th, I used plastic forks for labeling.

    This shows the thermometer inside the hot house. It is 105 degrees. An important note on temperature, you can get it too hot. Plants don’t do well when the temperature gets over 95 degrees, so BE CAREFUL !!!!!

    This shows one of the shelves. As you can see I can put 12 flats in one side. I can grow a total of 24 flats inside. WoW !!! This also shows the space between the two shelves. Where I can close the doors by putting the boards with the plastic stapled to them in the space.

    Here is a picture from the back. It shows 4 blankets, two for the back and two for the front flaps.

    I tried to show this clearly, but it is kind of hard to explain. Please ask questions or give me ideas by commenting, PLEASE !!!!!


    2 responses to “Greenhouse, Hot House, Cold Frame and Shelf Tunnel” RSS icon

    • That’s pretty ingenious. I can’t wait to see how well it performs!!

    • Me too !!!!
      Right now I can keep the temperature at about 70 degrees with the door open !! The thing is the outside temperature is about 50 degrees. I planted things like: cress, lettuce, onions, swiss chard and spinach. I even planted some summer squash and zucchini. All experiments.

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